OMMY GRIMES was sometimes a good boy, and sometimes a bad
boy; and when he was a bad boy, he was a very bad boy. Now
his mother used to say to him: "Tommy, Tommy, be a good boy,
and don't go out of the street, or else Mr. Miacca will take
you." But still when he was a bad boy he would go out of the
street; and one day, sure enough, he had scarcely got round
the corner, when Mr. Miacca did catch him and popped him into
a bag upside down, and took him off to his house.
 When Mr. Miacca got Tommy inside, he pulled him out of the
bag and sat him down, and felt his arms and legs. "You're
rather tough," says he; "but you're all I've got for supper,
and you'll not taste bad boiled. But body o' me, I've forgot
the herbs, and it's bitter you'll taste without herbs.
Sally! Here, I say, Sally!" and he called Mrs. Miacca.
So Mrs. Miacca came out of another room and said: "What d'ye
want, my dear?"
"Oh, here's a little boy for supper," said Mr. Miacca, "and
I've forgot the herbs. Mind him, will ye, while I go for
"All right, my love," says Mrs. Miacca, and off he goes.
Then Tommy Grimes said to Mrs. Miacca: "Does Mr. Miacca always
have little boys for supper?"
"Mostly, my dear," said Mrs. Miacca, "if little boys are bad
enough, and get in his way."
"And don't you have anything else but boy-meat? No pudding?"
"Ah, I loves pudding," says Mrs. Miacca. "But it's not often
the likes of me gets pudding."
"Why, my mother is making a pudding this very day," said
Tommy Grimes, "and I am sure she'd give you some, if I ask
her. Shall I run and get some?"
"Now, that's a thoughtful boy," said Mrs. Miacca, "only don't
be long and be sure to be back for supper."
So off Tommy pelted, and right glad he was to get off so
cheap; and for many a long day he was as good as good could
be, and never went round the corner of the street. But he
couldn't always be good; and one day he
 went round the
corner, and as luck would have it, he hadn't scarcely got
round it when Mr. Miacca grabbed him up, popped him in his
bag, and took him home.
When he got him there, Mr. Miacca dropped him out; and when
he saw him, he said: "Ah, you're the youngster that served
me and my missus such a shabby trick, leaving us without any
supper. Well, you shan't do it again. I'll watch over you
myself. Here, get under the sofa, and I'll set on it and
watch the pot boil for you."
So poor Tommy Grimes had to creep under the sofa, and Mr
Miacca sat on it and waited for the pot to boil. And they
waited and they waited, but still the pot didn't boil, till
at last Mr. Miacca got tired of waiting, and he said: "Here,
you under there, I'm not going to wait any longer; put out
your leg, and I'll stop your giving us the slip."
So Tommy put out a leg and Mr. Miacca got a chopper, and
chopped it off, and pops it in the pot.
Suddenly he calls out: "Sally, my dear, Sally!" and nobody
answered. So he went into the next room to look out for Mrs
Miacca, and while he was there Tommy crept out from under
the sofa and ran out of the door. For it was a leg of the
sofa that he had put out.
So Tommy Grimes ran home, and he never went round the corner
again till he was old enough to go alone.
Hundreds of additional titles available for
online reading when you join Gateway to the Classics